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Don’t miss these 10 major classic car events in 2019

With interest in classic cars continuing to rise, there are now more wonderful automotive events to mark on your calendars than ever before, not to mention countless small gatherings of enthusiasts that keep the grassroots spirit alive. These are our 10 must-attend events in 2019…

Even if, like us, your life revolves around cars, it’s impossible to attend all the great events that celebrate the rich tapestry of automotive culture each and every weekend around the world. Our impression from last year is that there’s a definite thirst for smaller, less casual, and more corporate events. But despite the promotional overload, it’s still difficult to skip major gatherings such as the Mille Miglia, Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, Pebble Beach, or Goodwood. 

That said, we’re very much looking forward to seeing how some big brand anniversaries will leave their mark on 2018 – Fiat is turning 120 years old, Bugatti will be 110, and Bentley and Zagato will celebrate their centenaries. We’re also excited to discover new races, rallies, gatherings, and concours events that we haven’t yet ticked off the bucket list. And, of course, we’d love to meet some of you for a coffee and a chat somewhere between Cernobbio and Carmel by the Sea. Let the games begin.  

GP Ice Race, 19–20 January 

Don’t get too comfy in front of the fireplace this winter. On 19–20 January, a raft of extraordinary racing cars will return to the ice of Zell am See in Austria for the GP Ice Race, recalling the original event’s glory days between the 1930s and ’70s. We’ve already waxed our skis in preparation for the skijoring.

Goodwood 77th Members’ Meeting, 6–7 April 

Fewer crowds, access all areas, and an astonishing selection of cars, many of which you’d never see at the Revival, the Members’ Meeting has established itself as an unmissable event. At the 77th edition in April, there will be high-speed demonstrations for flame-throwing BMW M1 Procars and modern-era Le Mans prototypes. Let’s hope it doesn’t snow again like last year. 

Tour Auto Optic 1000, 29 April–4 May

Ask any serious historic racer, and they’ll tell you the ultimate on-the-road test of them and their car’s stamina is the Tour Auto. The weeklong road rally harks back to the original and infamous Tour de France Automobiles, and always attracts an exquisite selection of race-bred machinery. 

Mille Miglia, 15–18 May 

The reason the Mille Miglia and the Tour Auto coexist so well is because they’re so different. The Mille Miglia retrospective is a harmonious mix of old cars and picturesque cities – a celebration that transcends the automobile and extends to Italy in general. It’s simply magical. 

Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, 24–26 May 

Arguably the jewel in the crown of the international concours calendar, the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este on the glistening shores of Lakes Como is an overwhelming concoction of glamorous people and the world’s most beautiful and significant cars. ‘The symphony of engines’ is this year’s motto – we can only imagine what the organisers have in store for us. 

Chantilly Arts & Elegance, 30 June 

After a hiatus in 2018, we’re very happy to see the Chantilly Arts & Elegance return this year. Organised by Peter Auto, the event sees several automotive beauty pageants take place in the picturesque grounds of the Domaine de Chantilly near Paris. Think of it as a classic car safari, on which you’ll spot achingly beautiful machines you’ll never forget. 

Monterey Car Week, 18–26 August

There’s so much more to Monterey Car Week than the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Though the Concours d’Elegance ‘Best of Show’ might steal the headlines at the end of the week, there’s a raft of events to enjoy on the Monterey peninsula, ranging from obscure autojumbles to premier historic motorsport. 

Concours of Elegance, 6–8 September 

In 2018, A. Lange & Söhne stepped up as the Concours of Elegance’s title sponsor, further bolstering the event’s reputation as the United Kingdom’s premier concours event. Its setting, the immaculately pruned and primped gardens of Hampton Court, are such that it could have been designed to exhibit elegant old cars. 

Goodwood Revival, 13–15 September 

What’s there to say about the Goodwood Revival that hasn’t been said before? Categorically the best historic motorsport meeting on the planet, the Revival is an event that simply never fails to astound. Be sure to hop on the time machine this September. 

Tour de Corse Historique, 7–12 October 

If there’s one event we’d urge our readers to visit in 2019, it would be the Tour de Corse Historique. Spanning four days and encompassing the island’s diverse and breathtaking landscape, it sees 200 historic rally cars attack some of the most spectacular and challenging special stages in the world. 

Photos: Robert Cooper, Rémi Dargegen, Mathieu Bonnevie, Tom Shaxson, Will Broadhead, Stephan Bauer 

Keep your eyes peeled on Classic Driver in the coming weeks when we’ll be running down the smaller, quieter, and less corporate events we’ll be sneaking off to in 2019.